WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES?
Ensuring sexual health is important to keep your overall health in good condition. However, ignoring sexual well-being may lead to sexually transmitted diseases.
Today, we will talk about the different types of sexually transmitted diseases.
What are Sexually Transmitted Diseases?
Sexually transmitted diseases or STDs, also known as sexually transmitted infections, are infections transmitted through sexual contact. There are various types of STDs, each caused by different pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, and parasites. These pathogens can be transmitted from person to person through sexual contact, which can include vaginal, anal, or oral sex.
Some of the common causes of STDs:
- Bacteria: Bacterial infections are caused by various types of bacteria. Common bacterial STDs include Chlamydia, Gonorrhea and Syphilis.
- Viruses: Viral infections are caused by different types of viruses. The viral STDs include Human Papillomavirus (HPV), Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).
- Parasites: STDs caused by parasites include Trichomoniasis, caused by the parasite Trichomonas vaginalis.
- Fungi: Although less common, fungal infections like candidiasis (yeast infection) can be transmitted sexually in some cases.
The modes of transmission can vary for different STDs, and they can be passed from one person to another through sexual intercourse (vaginal, anal, or oral), as well as through contact with infected bodily fluids, including blood, semen, vaginal secretions, and more. Some STDs can also be transmitted from mother to child during childbirth, through blood transfusions, or shared needles among drug users.
Different Types of Sexually Transmitted Diseases
- Chlamydia: Caused by the bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis, chlamydia is one of the most common STDs. It often has no symptoms but can lead to serious health problems if left untreated.
- Gonorrhea: Caused by the bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoeae, gonorrhoea can result in a range of symptoms, including painful urination and discharge. Left untreated, it can lead to severe complications.
- Syphilis: Caused by the bacterium Treponema pallidum, syphilis can progress through several stages, with symptoms ranging from sores and rashes to more severe health issues if left untreated.
- Herpes: Caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV), Herpes are of two types – HSV-1, typically associated with oral Herpes and HSV-2, typically associated with genital Herpes. It can cause painful sores and recurrent outbreaks.
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV): HPV is a group of viruses that can cause genital warts and can cause various types of Cancer, including Cervical Cancer. Many times, people with HPV do not show any symptoms.
- Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV): HIV is the virus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome). It attacks the immune system, making the infected individual more susceptible to other infections and diseases.
- Hepatitis B and C: These viruses can be sexually transmitted, leading to liver disease and other serious health issues.
- Trichomoniasis: Caused by a parasite called Trichomonas vaginalis, this infection can result in itching, burning, and discharge in the genital area.
- Bacterial Vaginosis: This is not a traditional sexually transmitted disease but an infection that can be related to sexual activity. It involves an imbalance of bacteria in the vagina and can lead to unusual discharge and odour.
- Pubic Lice: These are tiny insects infested in the genital area and cause itching.
The symptoms and severity of STDs can vary, and some individuals may not experience any symptoms at all. Regular sexual health check-ups, safe sex practices, and open communication with sexual partners are essential for preventing and managing STDs. Prevention of STDs also involves using barrier methods like condoms, getting vaccinated for some diseases like HPV and Hepatitis B, and having regular screenings and check-ups to detect and treat infections early. Education and communication about sexual health and safer sex practices are essential in preventing the spread of STDs.
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